Jump to content

Continue releasing country based souvenirs


NYPaddleCacher
Followers 13

Recommended Posts

. Is there any way I can design one and get it on my souvenir page myself? I also like the idea of the country flag and forget new cache types. that can't be all that hard. GS please respond.

 

I looked on the link posted a few posts up or search for Geocaching souvenirs on FlickR that are official souvenirs by Groundspeak. Some of them were not released but the art work is there eg for England.

 

With help from another cacher good in IT skills, I was able to put the England souvenir as well as a selection of souvenirs from the souvenirs tab onto my Public Profile Page.

 

Re your own souvenirs

A friend designed a souvenirs for a CITO I held and we have been given links to add home made souvenirs to put on our public profile eg EarthCache Day and anniversary Events etc.

 

I do not know if they needed to be approved by Groundspeak first or not.

 

Maybe a Groundspeak Lackey could answer please:

Would it be acceptable for us to create a souvenir of a flag of a country we have cached in that does not already have a released souvenir?

Then post this on our profile page please?

 

I had thought of putting a photo we took in Liechtenstein and creating a collage to include the country flag and the date we cached there and putting that on my profile page.

 

Groundspeak

Many thanks for all the hard work you do, especially the technical side - of which me and I'm sure countless others do not understand what goes into making the system work as it does. :)

Link to comment

I agree with most others. If you start a program (country based souvenirs) then you should follow through. There are many of us that enjoy caching in different countries and would like to see a little something for our efforts. I don't think an icon is asking for too much and I'm sure there are a ton of people that would volunteer artwork !

Link to comment

I agree with most others. If you start a program (country based souvenirs) then you should follow through. There are many of us that enjoy caching in different countries and would like to see a little something for our efforts. I don't think an icon is asking for too much and I'm sure there are a ton of people that would volunteer artwork !

It seems approval of artwork is the hangup, so use the country flag for goodness sake. How could that be controversial?

Link to comment

I agree with most others. If you start a program (country based souvenirs) then you should follow through. There are many of us that enjoy caching in different countries and would like to see a little something for our efforts. I don't think an icon is asking for too much and I'm sure there are a ton of people that would volunteer artwork !

It seems approval of artwork is the hangup, so use the country flag for goodness sake. How could that be controversial?

 

Controversy over the chosen artwork was one of the issues, but as I understand it, the bigger concern was performance. The process for retroactively awarding a region based souvenir is probably quite compute intensive. Post #85 in this thread explains the issues fairly well.

 

I don't believe, however, that the issues are insurmountable and as new countries were added each would have fewer finders and tax the servers to a smaller degree.

Link to comment

If internal design resources and controversy over the artwork itself are part of the issue, a good solve would be to announce design competitions where users could submit their own designs. Winners would receive design credit (as they currently do) as well as other incentives, such as awarding the chosen artists their own special "featured artist" digital souvenir. You could limit the contests to once a months to allow for a slow rollout period and less immediate demand on the system.

Edited by The Goggled Crusaders
Link to comment

I think all countries should have a souvenir and the UK should be split into regions or at least England,Scotland, Wales and N. Ireland as Southern Ireland has it's own regional souvenirs. These are a nice thing to collect and surely all they need to use is the flag for that country/region.

Edited by achillisland1
Link to comment

OK, we want a flag for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, which also qualifies for UK as a whole.

I am happy to design the artwork. What's the procedure to initiate and implement this?

 

It's been mentioned several times in this thread the but the creation of the artwork is not the issue. The main issue is the server load that would result due to the awarding process for additional souvenirs. The issues with England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland go beyond the creation of souvenirs because the countries don't have unique identifiers in the countries/territories list. That list is based upon the UN geopolitical ontology which does not specify Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland as distinct countries.

 

Earlier, someone mentioned that they were able to add souvenirs to their public profile page. That's fine but then you've got a public profile page with souvenirs on it and a souvenirs tab with Groundspeak awarded souvenirs on it. The solution, to me, seems obvious. Give us the ability to edit the souvenirs page just as we can do on the public profile. Change the name of the tab to "Souvenirs and Awards" and the page could display the Groundpspeak souvenirs, followed by an element into which we can add our own content. Then we could use external sites such as Badgegen to add other digitial artwork to the "Souvenirs and Awards" tab. Then, maybe would convince the Groundspeak partner, project-gc.com to add a feature that has a complete set of all country/region based souvenirs (they could even use that souvenirs that GS has already created) which could produce a block of html that could be cut-n-pasted onto the souvenirs tab. Then GS could get out of the country/state souvenir business entirely and let their partner site handle it.

Link to comment

We need one for the State of Ennui.

 

What are you talking about? In just a couple of days we'll all be able to get up to 7 souvenirs in August just for finding various caches of different types. Isn't that exciting?!?

 

Which will not cost too much band width. But adding new countries will? (Of course, I've only cached in Canada and the US of A. Almost went to St. Pierre et Miquelon, but that got downgraded from France, so we didn't bother.)

Link to comment
In just a couple of days we'll all be able to get up to 7 souvenirs in August just for finding various caches of different types. Isn't that exciting?!?
Which will not cost too much band width. But adding new countries will?
The problem with country/state/province souvenirs is NOT bandwidth. The problem is server load.

 

Apparently, determining which country/state/province a cache is in is computationally expensive (given the current design of the site's software/database). Groundspeak is unlikely to add any more country/state/province souvenirs until they resolve this design issue.

 

In contrast, determining the date of an online log is computationally cheap. That's why Groundspeak has been creating lots of date/event souvenirs, but no country/state/province souvenirs.

Link to comment

Would it be possible to un-automate this process? After you found your cache in Mexico you go to your souvenir tab, put the GC code of that cache (or the log-id) into a field and submit it. Yes, those who want to cheat will cheat, but that's always the case. At least that would take a lot of load off the servers and we could get more souvenirs (A girl may dream :anicute:)

Link to comment
In just a couple of days we'll all be able to get up to 7 souvenirs in August just for finding various caches of different types. Isn't that exciting?!?
Which will not cost too much band width. But adding new countries will?
The problem with country/state/province souvenirs is NOT bandwidth. The problem is server load.

 

Apparently, determining which country/state/province a cache is in is computationally expensive (given the current design of the site's software/database). Groundspeak is unlikely to add any more country/state/province souvenirs until they resolve this design issue.

 

In contrast, determining the date of an online log is computationally cheap. That's why Groundspeak has been creating lots of date/event souvenirs, but no country/state/province souvenirs.

 

There are a couple of other issues.

 

The retroactive awarding of country based souvenirs is computationally expensive as well. Assuming GS created a new souvenir for Mexico. As they did for previously released country based souvenirs they'd have to run a process which went through every user user account, checked if that account already had the souvenir awarded, then go through their "found" list to see if there were any caches which were found/attended/photo taken logs for a cache in Mexico, and if so, award the souvenir.

 

The other issue is that the August promotion is temporary. After some specified date after the end of the August, whatever code they've added to award the August souvenirs can be taken out and never executed again.

Link to comment

Would it be possible to un-automate this process? After you found your cache in Mexico you go to your souvenir tab, put the GC code of that cache (or the log-id) into a field and submit it. Yes, those who want to cheat will cheat, but that's always the case. At least that would take a lot of load off the servers and we could get more souvenirs (A girl may dream :anicute:)

 

Yep, those that are inclined to game the system are going to to game the system. A well known loophole in the way souvenirs work now is that one can log a find for a cache in another country (or an attended log for an event), immediately delete that log and the souvenir will remain. I do like the idea of self-claiming souvenirs though, so please keep dreaming.

 

 

Link to comment

I don't buy the server load argument. I just did some quick analysis using numbers provided by Project-GC, and 96.66% of all caches are already covered by a country/province/state souvenir. That is, adding the remaining countries to the mix would only be adding 3.34% of all caches, which shouldn't be very big of a server hit. Also keep in mind that quite a few of these caches probably don't get logged as often (how frequently are the caches in Kyrgyzstan or Angola being found?), so the server hit may even be less.

 

As for the initial awarding, there are ~82000 caches not currently covered by a souvenir. The computational hit for awarding these would be roughly the same as when they released the Sweden souvenir, but remember that they also awarded souvenirs for over 600000 other caches at the same time. If it's that big of a problem, release the big ones like Belgium and Italy one at a time and at off-times to limit the hit, then release the rest in ever-increasing batches until all are done. Or throttle the awarding process so it spreads the load out over a longer period (ie. a day). There are many ways to do it.

 

If there's a good reason why the remaining countries can't get souvenirs, I haven't seen it yet. So far, all of the arguments or explanations I've seen either don't hold water or can be easily worked-around with a bit of careful planning and logical thought.

Link to comment
I don't buy the server load argument. I just did some quick analysis using numbers provided by Project-GC, and 96.66% of all caches are already covered by a country/province/state souvenir. That is, adding the remaining countries to the mix would only be adding 3.34% of all caches, which shouldn't be very big of a server hit. Also keep in mind that quite a few of these caches probably don't get logged as often (how frequently are the caches in Kyrgyzstan or Angola being found?), so the server hit may even be less.
I don't know anything about the internals of Groundspeak's system, but my expectation is that the load depends on both the number of finds being logged and on the number of countries/states/provinces with souvenirs. Doubling the number of countries/states/provinces with souvenirs could easily double the load, regardless of the number of finds logged in any particular country/state/province.
Link to comment

+1 from me.

 

Would be great, especially like an Easter Island souvenir or something super rare.

 

Anyone can design them, they just have to approve. they can do competitions and select by country, people upload and for example I select, view ideas for... Zimbabwe (in a drop down menu)

It will generate all the ideas and I can vote for my favourite.

Link to comment

How about rather than automatically giving location based souvenirs, which requires every find log to be checked against every souvenir, create a page listing all the country/state/county souvenirs, where you can click each one and it will then check your finds against that location and award you the souvenir if you've qualified. Then those who are really bothered about the souvenirs can get them, those who actively despise the souvenirs won't get them, and the majority just won't bother. Server load generate through that page would be minimal as once you've successfully claimed a souvenir for a new country you wouldn't need to do it again and as I said earlier a lot of people just won't bother.

 

As for the controversial images, just use the UN recognised country flag.

Link to comment

+1 from me.

 

Would be great, especially like an Easter Island souvenir or something super rare.

 

Anyone can design them, they just have to approve. they can do competitions and select by country, people upload and for example I select, view ideas for... Zimbabwe (in a drop down menu)

It will generate all the ideas and I can vote for my favourite.

 

I hadn't thought of this before but a related souvenir enhancement I've suggested would be the ability to "claim" a souvenir. Basically, when you qualify for a souvenir instead of automatically have it added to your profile you'd get an email message with a message that indicated that you've been a souvenir with a link to the web site that could be used to "claim" the souvenir. Suppose that for country based souvenirs, you had a choice for the artwork that was added to your profile. For example, for each country, the "default" souvenir would be the country flag, but for some countries other choices (whether created by a designer at GS or created by someone else and approved by GS) would be available. The would effectively eliminate the complaints that some have made about the artwork used for some of the countries (e.g. the use of a rooster for the France souvenir was considered to be a stereotype).

Link to comment

Next week we'll be in Ethiopia. I know a souvenir has been created, but is unfortunately not available. Not a happy bunny here :(

 

I know. I'd have that one too. The artwork that was created for that one is really nice. Unfortunately, it was never used as an official souvenir. I can understand the drama it would create though. We'd be seeing tons of post from people that have found caches in Italy, Belgium, Mexico, Brazil,,,and so on asking "How did Ethiopia get a souvenir but there isn't one for ...."

 

Say hi to Lucy for me and try to do the Fresh and Green Academy cache.

Link to comment

I'm surprised there hasn't been any chatter about this: Blog Post

Six isn't many, but it's a step in the right direction! The comments seem to indicate that there will be more in the future as well.

Yeah, I didn't know about it until I saw it on Twitter last night. It didn't make this week's newsletter, so maybe that's why not as many people know about it yet.

 

Now, if there's some logic behind the release of these souvenirs, you'd expect they would be for the six countries with the most caches that don't yet have a souvenir. Those six countries are:

1. Belgium

2. Italy

3. Lithuania

4. Slovenia

5. Romania

6. Croatia

 

Since Croatia has been announced, maybe they'll be announcing the above six countries in reverse order. If they announce Romania next, then that will be pretty much confirmed.

There didn't seem to be any logic behind the last round that were released to celebrate 2000000, but hopefully they do things more logically going forward.

Link to comment

I have only three (3) country souvenirs, although I have found caches in thirteen (13) countries on the UN list. So I am in favor of CS continuing with more country souvenirs.

 

As somebody quoted earlier from Latitude47, CS only wants to use in house artists to prevent hidden messages in the artwork used for the souvenirs. However, somebody has suggested setting up a competition for suggested artwork from outside artists and then letting the geocaching community vote for their favorites. Between the submitting of artworks and the beginning of voting, the artworks could be vetted by the community so any hidden messages would be discovered and that artwork disallowed.

 

Take for example artwork for a Scotland souvenir, a place with a very active independence movement. Artists would submit their artwork by a deadline. GS would post the artworks that pass a preliminary examination for the community to examine and comment on. I am sure activists on both the pro- and anti-independence sides would scour all of the artworks looking for anything they could object to and bring those objections to GS's attention. Then those that passed the vetting process could be presented as candidates to be voted on and the winning artwork becoming the souvenir. If none of the artworks submitted get though the vetting process, or no artwork proves popular with the community, then the in house artists can still design something.

 

For those that do not recognize it, this process is similar to how we pick politicians in democracies. You probably will not get the best candidate, but you at least eliminate the worst candidates.

Link to comment

I think it's great these new souvenirs.

If it will be the list the A-Team suggest, we would get 2 new souvenirs. But for us it would also mean an extra incentive to visit the other 4 countries.

Personally I hope the order on making souvenirs won't be based on the amount of caches, since this only indicates the concentration of cachers, not where they travel to and how they explore the world. It would be nicer to show geocaching is a true worldwide game, so it's time for a souvenir in a South American country I think.

Or why not make souvenirs in the order of when the first in each country was placed?

Link to comment

Personally I hope the order on making souvenirs won't be based on the amount of caches, since this only indicates the concentration of cachers, not where they travel to and how they explore the world. It would be nicer to show geocaching is a true worldwide game, so it's time for a souvenir in a South American country I think.

I somewhat agree. The most cache-populous countries are no-brainers that all should have been taken care of long before now. Italy was one of these no-brainers, and Belgium would be another. After that, I'd like to see some kind of randomization. If they did keep releasing them in order of cache concentration, I'd have to wait a long time to get my Vatican City souvenir. :laughing:

 

Or why not make souvenirs in the order of when the first in each country was placed?

I've been trying to think of logical and/or fair ways to release future souvenirs, and this is a good possibility.

Is there a list anywhere that has this information readily available? I'm curious how the first-placed order compares to the cache-concentration order. It may follow that the countries with the earliest-placed caches tend to be the ones with the higher cache concentrations.

 

Another objective ordering would be simple alphabetical order, though those who found caches in Zambia or Zimbabwe wouldn't be too happy. :laughing:

 

...then there's always things like a random number generator, pulling names out of a hat, throwing darts at a map, etc...

Link to comment

I have only three (3) country souvenirs, although I have found caches in thirteen (13) countries on the UN list. So I am in favor of CS continuing with more country souvenirs.

 

So am I (check out who started this thread). I'm up to 21 countries in the *Groundspeak* country list (which is similar, but not the same as the UN list) but only have 7 country based souvenirs. I hope you don't mind but I looked at your profile and many of your countries are Caribbean countries and are likely going to be way down on the list for a souvenir.

 

 

Take for example artwork for a Scotland souvenir, a place with a very active independence movement.

 

Scotland won't get a souvenir because it's not on the Groundspeak country list, nor is it in the UN geopolitical ontology. In order to award a country based souvenir, the country/territory needs to have a unique countryID. Scotland doesn't have one because it's not recognized as an official country. There isn't one for England either.

Link to comment

Personally I hope the order on making souvenirs won't be based on the amount of caches, since this only indicates the concentration of cachers, not where they travel to and how they explore the world. It would be nicer to show geocaching is a true worldwide game, so it's time for a souvenir in a South American country I think.

 

Mexico would make a good candidate. It's high on the list of countries based on the amount of caches and is probably gets a lot of geocaching tourists based on it's proximity to the U.S.

 

I somewhat agree. The most cache-populous countries are no-brainers that all should have been taken care of long before now. Italy was one of these no-brainers, and Belgium would be another. After that, I'd like to see some kind of randomization. If they did keep releasing them in order of cache concentration, I'd have to wait a long time to get my Vatican City souvenir. :laughing:

 

Or why not make souvenirs in the order of when the first in each country was placed?

I've been trying to think of logical and/or fair ways to release future souvenirs, and this is a good possibility.

Is there a list anywhere that has this information readily available? I'm curious how the first-placed order compares to the cache-concentration order. It may follow that the countries with the earliest-placed caches tend to be the ones with the higher cache concentrations.

 

Another objective ordering would be simple alphabetical order, though those who found caches in Zambia or Zimbabwe wouldn't be too happy. :laughing:

 

...then there's always things like a random number generator, pulling names out of a hat, throwing darts at a map, etc...

 

Well, they already created artwork for a Ethiopia souvenir so that would be a good one too.

 

I've found caches in Vatican City and Zimbabwe (and Ethiopia) so a release list based on the number of caches, or an alphabetic list doesn't help me.

 

For the first non-U.S/Canada/German states souvenirs they used the old feedback forum to solicit nominations and votes and basically made it a popularity contest. For the 2,000,000th cache batch it seemed to be based on number of caches per country. Although the list would be similar, a list based on the number of *finds* per country might make more sense.

 

Link to comment

I would like to see some kind of randomizer. Whenever GS decides to release more country souvenirs they could present a spinning wheel of sorts before the design process starts. It stops at a certain time and the randomly chosen country will be used. Afterwards GS could announce that the souvenir was awarded to so many cachers or that so many caches are placed there with so many finds. North Korea would be a bit of a downer, though :laughing:

Link to comment

Some news about Lithuania and Slovenia??

I was already in Lithuania and will go to Slovenia this summer...

Thank you.

 

GS has been real quiet about country based souvenirs since they released the last batch (Greece, Italy, Croatia....). It's really just anyones guess as to when we'll see any more.

Link to comment

Was just in Bali, and was super bummed when I didn't get a souvenir. I didn't know that some places don't have them. It's always the first thing that I check out after I get my first cache in a new country.

 

Exactly what lead me to this thread after making a couple grabs in Dominican Republic.

Link to comment

Estonia announced in today's newsletter. Wonder when they'll start to appear in souvenir lists? Don't see one on mine as yet.

 

Sounds like the new country souvenirs will be retroactively added to profiles in one fell swoop next month.

 

We’ll unveil one new souvenir every week until all FIVE are officially released and awarded by mid December. ...And, if you’ve already found a geocache in Slovenia/Lithuania, we will retroactively add this souvenir to your profile after all five country souvenirs are announced.

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Followers 13
×
×
  • Create New...